Most of us wind up acquiring a nice stash of various jewelry tools over time.
Some of the things we use are “real” tools – pliers, cutters, reamers, files, crimpers, etc.
But do you also have a variety of odds and ends that you use as jewelry tools?
A few of my favorite “unofficial” tools that I use in making my jewelry are:
- Colorful mini-clamps that I clip onto the far end of my beading wire to keep my beads from sliding off while I’m stringing.
- Wooden popsicle sticks, marked with a Sharpie pen, which I use as template guides for measuring and marking where to bind wire bundles for common cabochon sizes.
- Bone beads with various sizes of holes, which I pull leather cord through several times to soften, straighten and distress the cord.
- A knife-sharpening stone, which I rub across the cut ends of wire to file off any sharp edges; it’s especially handy for heavier gauges of wire.
- A leather-worker’s awl, for poking the holes in my earring cards (I used to use an icepick with equally good results).
- Sharpie markers, which can be used to mark metals, color stamped lettering, or server as a mandrel.
- My grandmother’s knitting needles, which range from tiny to huge, are great as mandrels or for coiling wire.
There might be “official” jewelry tools that would do these jobs just as well as the odds and ends I use.
But I’m fond of these adapted devices, and I store them right alongside my pliers and other tools. They’ve become part of the gang.
And I’m interested to know –
What unofficial jewelry tools do you use?